NetSpeed Blog

Creating Warm Connections

Wednesday, February 24, 2021

I am a fan of self-development, so I am taking a four- session web workshop series on Saturdays with a group of fellow life travelers. Because I have delivered virtual training for over a decade, I do not always enjoy the delivery style and methods employed by other trainers and facilitators. Truth be told, I can be a teensy bit critical.

So, imagine my delight to be in a three-hour Zoom workshop led by a wonderful facilitator. What this facilitator accomplishes is a personal, warm, safe learning space. Before the pandemic, he led face-to-face retreats. He clearly desires to create similar warm connections in the virtual space. 

Here is what I have noticed about his virtual delivery style:

    • He facilitates in front of a simple chest with items displayed that have personal meaning for him.
    • His face is well lit by natural light.
    • He is positioned in his web camera so that you can see his facial expressions and his body language.
    • When people share their experiences aloud, he looks right into the camera lens, with acceptance, acknowledgement, and compassion.
    • His follow-up questions and comments demonstrate that he has really heard what the participant was expressing.
    • He asks challenging, thought-provoking questions.
    • He incorporates opportunities for pairs and small groups to work in breakout rooms and gives them enough time to have deeper conversations.
    • He leverages the fact that we are all on camera with activities that require us to look at each other and connect.
    • Every person in the session feels like they contribute to the experience that is being created with their peers.
    • He is fully present – nothing feels like he is presenting rote information.
    • It feels like he knows each of us personally and cares about our development.

I have heard countless times that the virtual space can be cold and impersonal. And yet, here we are creating the warmest of connections with a skilled facilitator in Zoom. It makes me happy.

More Resources for Creating Warm Connections

My newest ebook, Great Web Engagement: Connecting, Meeting, and Training Online, includes a chapter titled “Strengthening Connections & Building Relationships Online.”

This ebook is for anyone who delivers training and facilitates meetings in virtual environments.

Don’t miss it!

Posted by Cynthia Clay at 10:51 am